Report from WA Landcare Network Forum
By Basil Schur
On Friday 20th July he WA Landcare Network held a members and Stake-holders forum at the Cockburn Wetlands Education Centre. Around 90 people attended the event. The Welcome to Country by Marie Taylor, a Whadjuk Noongar Elder, included some special story telling – and this complemented a latter presentation by Oral McGuire about Noongar enterprise and Caring for Country at Avondale Park, near York.
While Alannah MacTiernan, Minister for Regional Development, Agriculture and Food, did indicate at at the forum her support for the work of landcare, it was perhaps a missed opportunity to challenge her for the paltry $7m a year the WA Government is allocating to State NRM programs.
Two presentations from Katanning Landcare and Blackwood Basin Group related to landcare groups setting up enterprises ( a nursery in the case of Katanning, and the Perup Nature’s Guest House in the case of the Boyup Brook based Blackwood Basin Group.) Green Skills, with its long history of running community based enterprises (ie Eco Jobs, Denmark Tip Shop), has something to offer other community groups keen to embark on income generation through running enterprises.
I gave a presentation on Bailjup Sanctuary Citizen Science program ( pdf attached), which complemented Dr Nic Dunlop’s presentation on Citizen Science in relation to NRM outcomes.
A rewarding presentation covering social entrepreneurship, and integrated agricultural/biodiversity programs was given by Lachy Ritchie of Odonata ( http://www.odonata.org.au/)
Lots of valuable ideas, and it would be great for Green Skills to potentially be part of an emerging partnership between Odonata and Gondwana Link.
Another useful presentation was by Dr Guy Boggs of the WA Biodiversity Science Institute (https://wabsi.org.au/) – a possible opportunity to get more university students and researchers to link with Green Skiils’projects and programs
At the networking level, I found it useful to connect with folk from the Warren catchments Council, the Conservation Council of WA, the Cockburn Wetland Centre, and reps from a wide range of other groups.
Basil Schur, Projects Manager, Green Skills
A selection of slides from the Balijup presentation…